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What to do when God says "NO"

When God says No. Unanswered Prayers. Faith. What to do when God says No.

This week is a really big week for my family. We will have court, and a judge will determine if we get to adopt our adorable two-year-old daughter, or if we will have to start working towards moving her in with her first parents, whom she has never lived with.

Over a year ago, this same judge made the decision to start working towards adoption, because her first parents were completely out of the picture.

We started calling her by her new name.

Dreamed of the future.

Let our hearts give way to the crazy love that we already had for her.

I can not even begin to tell you how relieved we were.

Excited to be completing our family.

Thankful to have 4 daughters.

For the first time in our marriage, everything was good.

And then the unexpected happened. Her first parents showed up after a very long time with no contact. I learned quickly what anxiety felt like. (I’ll write later about the journey through anxiety)

This was supposed to be our best year yet. Instead, it has been a roller coaster of fears and hopes as we have walked to the place we are now: going before a judge to find out our daughter’s future.

We are hopeful that the judge will grant us our petition. Hopeful that the truth will come to light. There is a lot to the story that I am unable to share, but ultimately we know that God will have the final word.

And we know that God loves to say YES to his children.

Matthew 7:9&11 says, “Which of you if your son asks for bread, will give him a stone? If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!”

When God says No. Faith. Unanswered Prayers. What to do if God says no. Adoption. Motherhood.

What if God says my little girl has to be ripped from the only home she’s ever known?

The only family she has ever known?

What if God sends her where she may not be safe?

Where she may be scared?

Where she may have an extremely tough life?

How do I rectify this to the truth that God loves to give good gifts to His children when they ask?

I have come to a place of complete confidence that if God says no, there has to be an extremely good ETERNAL reason!

God tells us in Isaiah that His thoughts are not our thoughts, and our ways are not His. I do not have to understand the answer, I am just supposed to ask.

So we have asked.

Prayed through tears.

Begged desperately.


And we have more people than we can count praying and believing with us.

Later this week, if the judge grants our petition, you may be able to hear our joy across state lines, but if he denies our request, we will cling to hope. Hope that, even in our mourning, God will be writing a beautiful story.

Maybe our sweet princess has to go through hardship to bring her to the feet of Jesus.

Maybe she has to walk through trauma so that her first parents can be reconciled to God.

We don’t know what our future, or hers, holds, but we know that God is working in eternal ways, and His ways are GOOD.

What have you been asking God for?

Is it healing for yourself or a loved one?

Restoration for a relationship?

Physical needs to be met?

Whatever it is, will you join me in clinging to hope? Hope that even if the answer is no, God is still working. Hope that says if God says no, He must have a REALLY good reason. Maybe that reason will never be seen here on earth, but maybe your no is actually an eternal yes. Let’s cling to that!

But, can we be real with one another? Knowing that God has a really good reason does not mean it doesn’t hurt. Some days, when the future looks dim, my heart begins to shatter, and I just cry out to God letting Him know that I am hurt.

What to do if God says no. Faith. Motherhood. Adoption. Unanswered Prayers. When God says No.

And in those moments, He wraps His arms around me and says, “My child, I’ll never leave you or forsake you. I’ll hold you up with my righteous right hand.”

Oh, and if you wondered, if the judge denies our request, you’ll find me on my face drenched in tears.

Or maybe in bed.

Wearing last weeks makeup.

And awful looking hair.

But then God will lift me up, and I’ll cling to hope that will only be found in Jesus.

Faith. Unanswered Prayers. When God says No. Motherhood. Adoption. What if God says no?

Have you ever experience God telling you "NO"? How did you respond? We'd love to hear your story!

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This post was written by one of our new contributors, Bethany Slocum. Bethany is a mom to 4 daughters,

Faith. Unanswered Prayers.

wife of the pastor, and most importantly a child of the One True King. In her 6 short years of marriage, she’s worked through depression, overcome 3 years of infertility, miscarried 4 babies, birthed her miracle baby, adopted a teenager, adopted a baby through foster care, sent foster children home, and is currently trying to adopt her precious daughter out of foster care. Through all of these experiences, God has taught her to “consider it pure joy when you face trials of many kinds”, but she is also very real about her struggles. Bethany loves to teach scripture and encourage others towards a passionate pursuit of Christ.

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